Interactivity 3: Improvisation

Reading Fast City is a highly physical manoeuvre, because the lexias and sound effects are triggered upon a mouse-over action, as well as clicking on the buttons. In moving the pointer from one button to another, the user will inadvertently trigger "accidental" lexias which he or she may choose to read, or ignore. In addition, the user might wish to try and locate particular sound effects hidden within the grid of 60 apparently identical buttons; in which case each button will also trigger new changes in lexia, which may be read or ignored.

Certain types of users will be even more effectively motivated by the audio reinforcement to pursue the exploration of sonic textures; essentially, stop thinking about the music as a by-product of reading, but rather proceed to actively trigger and compose a dub soundtrack, and look upon the changing lexias as a by-product of musical improvisation, instead of vice versa.

In this sense, Fast City foregrounds the self-reflexivity of technological reading practices, and cross-references the interesting phenomenon of contemporary electronic dance games such as Dance Dance Revolution. These games call for players to trigger buttons and sensors by performing a combination of pre-determined dance steps and hand actions; at the height of player immersion, the boundary between game-playing and dancing is effectively blurred, both fusing into one zen-esque technological experience.

As such, the physiological aspects of reading Fast City already configure it to be remediated onto physical spaces as an interactive narrative installation, where visitors might trigger lexias and audio effects via a hyper-sensitive floor mat.